I have always thought
of myself as independent:
strong, resilient, a man of decisions;
able to change the world and
“Make this planet a better place”.
These are the things I love to tell myself.
And yet, as I look with a closer eye,
I see myself in the midst of all,
dependent, vulnerable and subject
to the decisions of others;
tied by gravity to this world,
and bound by forces social,
and powers beyond me and in me,
that tether me here as strongly
as the gravity that holds
me in so emphatically in place.
And in the midst of all
I am breathing with this planet:
breathing its change, and anguish,
feeding here as a bird feeds in the ocean,
existing as a mouth craving like a young bird
or a starving child thrown on a screen.
I have always imagined that there was more:
the beyond and the transcendent,
a heaven up and hope on earth;
but now I think that material is all
and ever was all and is the cause of all,
though I refuse to call myself a materialist.
So I remain still a man of decisions and perplexities,
tempered by age and living as dependent
and independent, hoping,
and sometimes praying, in the
midst of joy and fear.